Creating Waves of Awareness
GERIATRICS | LET THE DEPARTING SOUL TASTE THE AMBROSIAL TASTE OF HOMEOPATHY
Dr. M. A. USMANI
Copyright 2011-14/All rights reserved © Dr Usmani
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The dictionary meaning of Geriatrics is: the branch of medical science that deals with diseases and problems specific to old people. Evidently it is a field for utmost therapeutic care. It is like treading on thin ice. Put a heavy foot, the whole show disappears: the protagonist has already gone, leaving you repenting behind. Teacher is he who saves you from pitfalls and accidents that can be encountered in his field. Homeopathy has specific methodology for treating the aged. Wanton and careless behavior can mean loss of life. Heroic doses can be counter-productive.
A physician must devise a strategy here. He should evolve a vision of seeing an aged and decrepit patient as a fragile phenomenon. A homeopath’s approach towards geriatrics should be as treating a chronic case with acute remedies, with small doses, frequently repeated. If a chronic remedy comes out as indicated, it should also be prescribed in small potencies, as 3, 6, 12, and at most 30. (the 30th. should not be repeated so often). Don’t give a chronic remedy in very high doses, which can put the patient to unnecessary ordeal of exploration.
The precarious and rapid flux of change of symptoms of a tottering old man requires rapid change of medicines. And this can be done only if low potencies are used exclusively, with the added advantage that they can be alternated without any compunction, or prick of conscience. If a person, e.g., already on Baryta carb., for old-age infirmities and failing memory, comes to complain of the prolapsus recti, with dark hemorrhages, during and after stool, and you decide to give Hammamalis, as the bleeding was a great drain on the system, you can add this to the previous prescription—Baryta carb. at night, and Hammamalis 3 or 6, in watery solution td., during the day. And if Podophyllum or Aesculus.H. is indicated for the prolapsus, it can replace Baryta for quite few days.
I have told elsewhere that Arsenic should not be used, if indicated, in terminal cases in old age, as it could act as euthanasia. So you should use Chin.Ars. instead. It would prove to be a better choice, as Arsenic ion would meet the therapeutic need of the patient and the China ion will act as a pick-me-up, and as an appetizer. So this would prove to be a more comprehensive prescription.
Diarrhea is the most dangerous ailment for old age. Always try to save old people from diarrhea. It saps their energies within moments; and drains their electrolytes. Two remedies should always be in the chest of medicines for the geriatrics: i.e. Croton-tig. and Aloes. The former is quite a specific for sudden attack of diarrhea, as cholerine or food-poisoning, with great deal of rumbling, with watery alvine motions, painful, but usually painless. Aloes, on the other hand, is a great friend of the old people with insecurity feeling at the rectum. Involuntary defecation is the hallmark of this agent. Patient does not discriminate weather it is flatus that he is going to pass or feces. I have restored confidence of great many old patients, who never used to go out without wearing pampers, or packing themselves securely. They have got full control on their bowels. Never forget to complement the curative action of this remedy with a dose of Sulphur. That will give the cure permanence.
For the sudden collapse after exhaustive draining of the system from diarrhea, or allied complaints, give a dose of Camphor3o, dry on tongue, repeat in watery solution, if necessary. For the remaining weakness take help from Strychininum from 3X to 6c. Instead of Camphor you can give Carbo veg. 30 if, in spite of cold perspiration, the patient feels hot and desires incessant fanning. If the patient is sighing a great deal with congestion of the chest, give Digitalis.
The mention of Digitalis brings to mind the fact that this agent is also a great friend of the old indeed. It is mostly indicated in the senile hypertrophy of the prostate. If truly indicated for the prostate, it also benefits the ageing heart, and gives a great boost to its working. Digitalis, in the form of homeopathic mother tincture is confirmed heart tonic along with Craetegus Oxy. They are the organ remedies of the heart. When you have a very aged person to treat, you should try to find pretext for the indication of this agent, and take full advantage of it.
One of the major problems in Geriatrics is the ubiquitous complaint of exhaustion or loss vitality. Patient’s attendants will approach you to allow him some vitamin-mineral nostrum which he was wont to take when under some allopathic physician. Be wary of such implorations. Such nostrums can burden the vital force unnecessarily. Think instead of organ affinity drugs and confirmed pick-me-ups: as Digitalis, Craetegus, Strychininum, Chininum Arsenicosum,
Vanadium, Strych.Ars., Strych.Sulph., Strychnia Phos., Onosmodium, Avena Sativa, Carduus Marianus, or some bio-salts as: Kali Phos, Calc.Phos., Mag.Phos., Natrum Phos., and Ferrum Phos. But Baryta Carb. along with nutritious and easily digestible food, is a cure-all tonic for them. Dry fruits, especially almond, walnut and resins are their nibbling pastime.
Nectar from the Hahnemann’s hive on the tongue of the departing soul is a surety for the prolongation of life and, of course, of a peaceful but inevitable death. But when a geriatric death occurs in an allopathic hospital people’s impression usually is that it has occurred because of the toxicity of massive drugging, which is unthinkable in homeopathy.